Based in Niort, the Ruminant Diseases and Welfare Unit (PBER) combines research and reference activities for goat, sheep and cattle health and welfare.
The unit holds the mandates of National Reference Laboratory (NRL) for infectious bovine rhinotracheitis, enzootic bovine leucosis, bovine hypodermosis and bovine viral diarrhoea.
In addition to these four national reference mandates, it has reference mandates for ruminant paratuberculosis from the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) and the French federation of animal health protection groups (GDS France). The partnership with GDS France creates synergies with their respective missions and strengths, combining scientific competence, knowledge of the field and access to samples. The aim is to improve diagnostic tools, along with their use and reliability in epidemiological surveillance, control and certification programmes.
As well as improving techniques for diagnosing bacterial, viral or parasitic infections, the unit, supported by the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region, takes part in research projects to support ruminant breeding sectors in developing their production systems. These projects focus in particular on controlling the spread of germs (transmission between species or from wildlife, dispersion of livestock effluents, etc.), reducing chemical inputs and preventing the emergence of resistant germs, as well as on improving animal welfare.
Main ongoing projects
Development of an operational tool for assessing and managing sheep and goat welfare on farms
Funding: France Agrimer
Partners: IDELE, Inter-regional centre for research and information on sheep production, INRAE, Roquefort General Confederation, Chambers of agriculture (71,87,64,17,41,37 départements).
Study of antigenic communities of pestiviruses and development of a diagnostic test to enable serological differentiation of the three pestiviruses (CSFV, BVDV and BDV) using an ELISA technique
Funding: ANSES, GDS France, Nouvelle-Aquitaine Region
Partners: VIP Unit (ANSES)
Development of a serological confirmation tool based on recombinant antigens derived from the BoHV1 virus causing infectious bovine rhinotracheitis and the BoHV2 virus.
Funding: Nouvelle-Aquitaine Region, GDS France
Partner: GDS France
Expaircox Part 3 (2020-2021)
Coxiella dispersion during handling and spreading of manure
Funding: Nouvelle-Aquitaine Region, Deux-Sèvres Departmental Council, INRAE
Partners: INRAE, Qualyse, ANSES (Sophia Antipolis Laboratory)
Parasitism management practices and anthelmintic resistance in the sheep sector
Funding: Nouvelle-Aquitaine Region
Partners: Qualyse, GTV 79, professional partners
Impact of anaerobic digestion on mycobacteria survival
Funding: GDS France, Nouvelle-Aquitaine Region
Partners: GDS Cantal, GDS France
Improving animal welfare and biosecurity to enhance goat health and robustness
Funding: Nouvelle-Aquitaine Region, National inter-professional association for goats (ANICAP) and Directorate General for Food.